May is National Share-a-Story Month



May is National Share-a-Story Month (NSSM), an annual celebration of storytelling and story sharing. NSSM was founded by the Federation of Children’s Book Groups (FCBG) with the aim of bringing children and stories together. Across the country Federation book groups and individuals run a whole host of events. Each year they are inspired by a specific theme and work with different organisations to provide people with resources and opportunities. The theme for 2016 is ‘A Place for Stories’.

The idea is to encourage the telling and sharing of stories in unusual (but safe) places.  Anywhere from under a tree to aboard a canal boat or a cross channel ferry, in the depths of a castle, on a bridge or under a bridge, under the bed, in a café, at a stately home, in the depths of a forest, a tent, at the bottom of the garden, in a bird hide, on an island, at a museum, at a fairground, on the bus, on a park bench…the ideas are endless. Look for related activities here and click here to see what exciting events are already planned. Let them know what you are doing at

There are also three amazing dedicated story centres in different parts of the country which focus on celebrating books for children and provide great places for story-based exhibitions, activities and events: The Story Museum (Oxford); Seven Stories (Newcastle); and The Discover Centre (London).

CATCHLINE: Discworld and time for bed Story Museum Length: Standalone Contact: Sophie Hiscox 01865 790050 Photo: Andrew Walmsley 22/05/15 L-R: Dominic Webley (4 mum Louise Mapstone 07989945247) and Henry Sullivan (4, mum Philippa Sullivan 07785594529) The Story Museum has a lot going on at the moment. For starters they have a new exhibition called Time for Bed which lets kids put on a dressing gown and go and read   




Building on this year’s theme, I’ve put together a list of books set in unusual places to inspire you.


The London UndergroundDog on a Train by Kate Prendergast (Old Barn Books)

On a bus –  Off to Market by Elizabeth Dale and Erika Pal (ill.) (Frances Lincoln)

On a train:


On a boat:

On a bicycle:



Down a holeSam and Dave Dig a Hole by Mac Barnett and Jon Klassen (ill.) (Walker)

In a boxThis is Our House by Michael Rosen (Walker)

On a canalSnowy by Berlie Doherty (Troika)

In a caveCave Baby by Julia Donaldson (Macmillan)

On a desert island:



In a rainforestWhere the Forest Meets the Sea by Jeannie Baker (Walker)

In the attic In the Attic by Hiawyn Oram and Satoshi Kitamura (ill.) (Andersen)

Under the stairsThe Bear under the Stairs by Helen Cooper (Picture Corgi)

In a museum at night – Lost in the Toy Museum by David Lucas (Walker)


In the library – Willy’s Stories by Anthony Browne (

In the afterlifeMore Than This by Patrick Ness (Walker)

In a graveyardThe Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman (Bloomsbury)

On the Moon:


These are only a few examples, can you think of any more stories set in unusual places?



One thought on “May is National Share-a-Story Month

  1. This is a highly enjoyable exercise…. Here are some of my favourites for a range of ages, some classic and some new, all with a watery location:

    In the bath – Time to get out of the bath, Shirley, by John Burningham
    Andrew’s bath, by David McPhail

    In the swimming pool – A taste of chlorine, by Bastien Vives (graphic novel)
    Pool, by JiHyeon Lee

    A more sinister swimming option – The watertower, by Gary Crew

    Swimming round a goldfish bowl and pondering the meaning of life – What I think about when I think about… swimming, by Ellie Levenson and Katie O’Hagan

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